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Unequal Employment Opportunity: EEOC accused of disability discrimination

Reporters are calling a former EEOC employee's discrimination lawsuit the most ironic lawsuit ever. Indeed, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is the government entity charged with investigating and pursuing employment discrimination claims made by employees. In 2011, the agency received over 25,000 complains of disability discrimination.

A few weeks ago we wrote about this type of thing happening in other sectors, including at state-run agencies and nonprofit organizations. Yet, neither of those other lawsuits rises to the same level of hypocrisy as this one.

The woman was employed as an administrative law judge with the EEOC and also suffers from multiple sclerosis. Her lawsuit alleges that the EEOC failed to provide reasonable accommodations as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, and that they treated her with less leniency than non-disabled colleagues. Specifically she was given tighter deadlines for her work, was not allowed to work from home, and was denied promotional opportunities.

She tried to pursue the claim through internal dispute resolution processes but was unsuccessful. An appeals court recently upheld her right to pursue the claim in court.

The EEOC has not made a public comment on this case at this time.

Almost 70 percent of people with disabilities are not a part of the workforce, suggesting that although we have laws to protect disability discrimination; the barriers to entering the workforce are still too high for people with disabilities.

Our law firm has a robust practice in this area of the law, more information on how we fight for the rights of people with disabilities is available on our firm's website.

Source: Huffington Post, "Mary Bullock Discrimination Lawsuit Against Anti-Discrimination Agency Most Ironic Lawsuit Ever?" July 31, 2012.

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